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Old 01-14-2009, 04:20 PM   #1
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Default extract kits?

Has anyone tried any of the Northern Brewer exract kits? Are the ingredients of quality? I want to try the couple different hefe's. Any suggestions?

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Old 01-14-2009, 04:36 PM   #2
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I've never used any NB kits, but from what I hear (both here on HBT and elsewhere), they're quality kits.

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Old 01-14-2009, 05:09 PM   #3
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I used NB extract kits for my first 8 or 9 brews. Turned out with a great beer every time. My only gripe is that they rotate their ingredients in the kits depending on the stock they have, so if you buy the same kit a few months apart the ingredients will be different. Great kits though, good beer, and launched me into brewing.
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Old 01-14-2009, 06:18 PM   #4
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I've done several of them. All of them are good tried and true recipes. The only thing I've noticed changed in them are hops due to the shortage.
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Old 01-14-2009, 08:25 PM   #5
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The only kits I've used thus far. Great beer!
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Old 01-19-2009, 03:17 PM   #6
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I use them quite a bit. In fact, the Nut Brown in my Primary is from NB. I like them because I can order two at a time and still only costs me $8 for shipping. All the beers I have made from them have come out very well. I have an Imperial Stout kit that I will be brewing in a couple of weeks, once my primary is empty.
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Old 01-19-2009, 11:22 PM   #7
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One of the friends who got me into brewing swears by NB. Everything I've had of hers has been great!
Stop using so much caramel malt. Your beer will thank you.
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Old 01-22-2009, 02:25 AM   #8
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I have brewed a few of their kits and have purchased ingredients from them for other recipes many times. The kits were pretty good I felt (Bavarian Hefe, Czech Pils, English IPA) and the extract seemed to be fresh.

My only suggestion is to ignore the instructions that come with the kit, especially if you are using specialty grains. I follow the methods laid out in the Palmer book (steep at 165 or so for a 20 mins - half hour) rather than doing what NB says which is to remove the specialty grains when the water starts to boil. The latter is not a good method for a number of reasons (tannin extraction, different stoves will boil water at different speeds) Other than that I think the hopping schedules they provide are accurate.

As as aside, I think customer service at NB is great. I once had a yeast pack that didn't activate and an auto-syphon that broke in shipping and they sent out replacements immediately. They can be a little pricey for hops, which is why I bought some cascades in bulk from a hop farm in the late fall.
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Old 01-22-2009, 03:35 PM   #9
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Haven't made one of them since I moved to Oregon, but had great success with their kits before moving.
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Old 01-23-2009, 05:46 PM   #10
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They're good kits. You won't be disappointed.

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